Red Bull: We’ll add as much performance as possible by Imola

Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (33) Red Bull Racing RB16B Honda

Red Bull chief engineer Paul Monaghan has revealed that team will “put as much performance” as they can onto the RB16B ahead of the second race of the 2021 Formula 1 season at Imola.

Max Verstappen claimed pole position by a margin of almost four tenths of a second from Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes ahead of the Bahrain Grand Prix, only for the seven-time world champion to pip him to the race victory.

Following the race Mercedes admitted that they needed to improve their pace, but Red Bull are clearly leaving nothing to chance as they chase a first world title since 2013.

“Some developments are already in the pipeline for Imola, more for subsequent races, so it’s now a two-pronged fight,” Monaghan said.

“We need this car to be put down on the ground and run and give us no hiccups. We will put as much performance onto the car as we possibly can by Imola.

“Our destiny is in our control and we can’t influence what Mercedes, McLaren, Ferrari and everybody else want to do. So we’ve got to remain focused.”

While things appear tight between the two front-runners at this stage in the season, Monaghan admitted that the season-long development race would likely decide which team comes out on top.

“We’ve identified some areas where the car can be improved and we concentrate on those,” he added.

“We can’t influence what the others do, so we’ve got to develop it, we’ve got to make it bulletproof.

“It’s not all about going to Imola and chalking a win up on the board to say ‘oh we’re world champions’ – that’s not going to happen.

“It’s going to be a long fight for a long season, and it’s not won and lost here.

“There’s a sense of disappointment in the garage, which is felt by all, but we’ve got a quick car, we’ve got a fantastic pair of drivers, we’ve got a good team and everybody’s aware that we’re going to be challenging all the way through.”